When Jody Plauché was a 10-year-old boy, his parents sent him to karate lessons. The coach, Jeff Doucet, was a good friend of Jody’s father, Gary Plauché.
The parents believed Jody would learn an essential life skill, however, they could never imagine that the time spent at karate lessons would turn into the worst period of the boy’s life and would change the course of his family’s life forever.
Jeff molested Jody and he eventually kidnapped him and took him away to Port Arthur, Texas, and then to Los Angeles, before police tracked him down a week later.
“It was over several months before he ever started to do anything, and he had already been testing the boundaries,” Jody recalled later as an adult. “He had begun the grooming process, not just on me but my family. Pedophiles are very good at what they do. One of the things they’ll do with the grooming is test the child’s boundaries.”
He then continued: “Jeff would go, ‘We need to stretch,’ so he’d be touching around my legs. That way, if he grabbed my private area, he could say, ‘It was an accident; we were just trying to stretch.’ Or, if we were driving a car, he’d put his hand in my lap and might go, ‘Oh, I didn’t mean to. I didn’t realize my hands were there.’ That’s that slow, gradual seduction.”
One person who couldn’t get over what happened to Jody was his father Gary. He couldn’t possibly imagine letting Jeff live after everything he had done to his son so he decided to take matters into his on hands.
On February 19, 1984, Gary put on a baseball cap and sunglasses and headed towards the Baton Rouge Metro Airport in Louisiana because he knew his son’s rapist would walk out the doors at that time. Gary was speaking on the phone with someone, probably a friend of his named Jimmy, and whispered on the phone: “Here he comes. You’re about to hear a shot.”
Gary took out his gun and shot Jeff in the ear, killing him at the spot. The entire incident was caught on camera by reporters who were covering the story at the time.
Years after the killing, Jody opened up about what his father had done and said: “After the shooting happened, I was very upset with what my father did. I did not want Jeff killed. I felt like he was going to go to jail, and that was enough for me,” as reported by The Advocate.
“My dad was absolutely too extreme. He used to tell people, ‘If anybody ever touches my kid, I’ll kill him.’ I knew he wasn’t kidding. That’s why I couldn’t tell anybody. And that’s exactly what he ended up doing,” Jody told ESPN.
Gary was sent to court and was sentenced to five years of probation. Except for the time while he was waiting for his trial, Gary didn’t spent time in prison.
In an interview with Yahoo, when asked if he had any regrets for killing his son’s rapist, Gary answered: “No regrets.”
Jody, who is now in his 40s, released a book titled Why Gary Why? in which he writes how parents could protect their children. He also works as a sexual assault counselor.
“It is what it is,” Jody said. “I’ve embraced who I am and what I’ve gone through. That’s why I wrote the book. Again, it’s not about me or what Daddy did. It’s about educating and helping other people.”
Gary passed away in 2014.